The coastal boardwalk is raised up, higher than ground level. It’s built atop a stone and timber breakwater, meant to keep occasionally surging seas away from homes, businesses and schools, not to mention the roads, municipal buildings and the hospital.
At the other side of town, the Orcan River runs with high tides being kept back by a now-rusted, metal breakwater. The river used to regularly overflow, sending water throughout the downtown, in extreme nuisance flooding.
“We’re not talking about rubber boots, we’re not talking about hip rubbers. We’re talking about boats to get around,” said resident Donna Lambe, who was walking with friend Gail Ryan along the boardwalk Wednesday and stopped to speak with The Telegram.
Lambe recalled there was a Christmas season in the 1970s when people rowed house to house with turkey.